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Keep Your Money with EIC, CTC, VITA

The ‘Earn it Keep it Save it’ campaign is Utah’s statewide initiative to strengthen family financial stability through the utilization of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), the Child Tax Credit (CTC), Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA), and asset formation programs for low and median income families. Utah State University Extension offices throughout the state co-host and partner with Community Action Partnership, Wells Fargo Bank, Utah Community Credit Union, and dozens of other community partners to provide outreach education and assistance to help Utahans (including those living in rural areas) keep the money they have earned, receive earned income tax credits, have their taxes done for free, and learn ways to use their refunds to invest in their family’s future.

 
The Earned Income Credit (EIC) is a powerful tax benefit for working people who earn low or moderate incomes.  It has several important purposes:  to offset taxes, to supplement very low wages, and to provide a work incentive.
 
The EIC can offset some or all of the taxes workers must pay, such as payroll taxes, and can help cover any federal income tax workers may still owe at tax time.  Besides offsetting taxes, workers earning low wages may also get cash back through the EIC refund.  Workers who qualify for the EIC and claim it on their federal tax return can receive a refund from the IRS even if their earnings were too small to owe income tax.
 
Who can get the EIC and how much is it worth?  Single or married people who worked full-time or part-time at some point in 2012 can qualify for the EIC, depending on their income.
 
Workers who were raising one child in their home and had income of less that $36,920 (or $42,130 for married workers) in 2012 can get an EIC of up to $3,169.
 
Workers who were raising two children in their home and had income of less than $41,952 (or $47,162 for married workers) in 2012 can get an EIC of up to $5,236.
 
Workers who were raising three or more children in their home and had income of less than $45,060 (or $50,270 for married workers) in 2012 can get an EIC of up to $5,891.
 
Workers who were not raising children in their home, were between ages 25 and 64 on December 31, 2012, and had income below $13,980 (or $19,190 for married workers) can get an EIC up to $475.
 
Workers with investment income exceeding $3,200 in 2012 may not claim the EIC.
 
The Child Tax Credit (CTC) is an extra tax break for working families!  It is a federal tax credit worth up to $1,000 in 2012 for each qualifying child under age 17 claimed on the worker’s tax return.  Since 2001, the CTC has been available to millions more low- and moderate-income working families and provided many families a larger CTC than they could have received in the past.  This “Additional CTC” is refundable, meaning some families can get the credit even if they owe no income tax.  Eligible families can receive the “Additional CTC,” or CTC refund, from the IRS as part of their tax refund.
 
Who can claim the Child Tax Credit refund?  To be eligible for the CTC refund, a single or married worker must:
 
·       Have a qualifying child under age 17;
·       Have taxable earned income above $3,000;
and
·       Have either a Social Security number (SSN) or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).  ITINs are issued by the IRS to individuals who are unable to obtain a Social Security number.  Immigrant workers with either type of number may be able to claim the CTC refund.
 
Can a working family get both the Child Tax Credit refund and the Earned Income Credit?  Yes!! Most low-wage working families that qualify for the CTC refund will also be eligible for the EIC.  For many families that qualify for both credits, the EIC will be larger, but the CTC still will provide a significant income boost.  File a Federal Tax Return to get the EIC and CTC.  Get free tax help at your local VITA site.
 
Do You Qualify for FREE Income Tax Preparation?  Have your taxes done for free at our VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) site in Nephi at the Juab County Extension office, 160 North Main. Then use your refund to invest in your family’s future.  To see if you qualify for free tax preparation and to schedule your tax appointment, call the USU Extension Office at 435-623-3450, or dial 2-1-1.  Appointments are scheduled every Tuesday afternoon, February 5th through March 26th.  When coming to the appointment, please make other arrangements for your children. For more information or for a VITA site outside of Juab County, visit utahtaxhelp.org.  
 
For more information about Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit, visit www.irs.gov online or call 1–800–829–3676.

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